scorecardOne of Britain's biggest grocery chains is restricting how many discount-brand items shoppers can buy as inflation bites
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One of Britain's biggest grocery chains is restricting how many discount-brand items shoppers can buy as inflation bites

Grace Dean   

One of Britain's biggest grocery chains is restricting how many discount-brand items shoppers can buy as inflation bites
Retail2 min read
  • Asda is restricting how many items shoppers can buy from its discount range to three of each product.
  • The grocer says this is because of huge demand and is just for "a short time."

Britain's third-biggest supermarket chain is restricting how many items shoppers can buy from its discount range as inflation continues to soar.

Asda introduced a new Just Essentials range in May that it rolled out more widely in August, featuring bright yellow packaging and low prices. This replaces its Smart Price budget range.

Asda has since placed a limit on how many items shoppers can buy, restricting them to three of each product for a "short time."

"We love that you love Just Essentials and we're working hard to keep up with demand," signs on Asda's aisles underneath some of the Just Essentials products read. "To help make sure customers can get what they need, we're limiting purchases to 3 of each product per customer for a short time."

An Asda spokesperson told Insider: "Just Essentials is proving really popular at the moment and we're working hard to get the out-of-stock products back on the shelves as quickly as we can."

They added: "To make sure as many customers as possible can buy these products we are temporarily limiting purchases to a maximum of three of each product."

The full product line, made up of almost 300 products, including meat, fish, bread, cupboard staples, and household and toiletry products, is expected to be fully rolled out by the end of the year. Asda has previously said that Just Essentials is "set to become the largest budget-friendly essentials range in the market."

The range includes tins of red kidney beans for £0.33, or $0.39, tins of sliced carrots for £0.23, 2.5-kilogram (5.5-pound) bags of white potatoes for £0.99, and 400-gram (seven-ounce) packs of cooked ham for £1.69.

German discount supermarket Aldi – often ranked as Britain's cheapest grocery store – also sells 2.5 kilogram bags of "wonky" potatoes for £0.99 under its budget range. It similarly charges £1.69 for 400 gram-packs of cooked ham under its generic label. Tins of red kidney beans and sliced carrots also sell for the same price as at Asda.

Data from the UK's Office for National Statistics shows that food and non-alcoholic beverage prices rose by 12.7% in the year to July 2022, including an increase of 2.3% between June and July, the highest monthly increase since May 2001.

Inflation-strapped customers are trading down, switching to cheaper brands or grocery store private labels. Some are even changing the types of products they buy as certain categories, like meat, get more expensive.

Asda, which Walmart sold for $8.8 billion in 2020, has almost 600 stores across the UK, where it's the third-biggest grocery store by market share.




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